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Siri comes to Apple TV and the iPad Pro finally lands

By Heather Wright, Thu 10 Sep 2015
FYI, this story is more than a year old

After plenty of speculation, Apple has finally unveiled its iPad Pro offering, along with an updated Apple TV, and new iPhones and Apple Watches.

Dubbed by Apple as ‘the biggest news in iPad since the iPad’, the Pro features a 12.9-inch Retina display, a 64-bit A9X chip and a new four-speaker audio design

‘iPad Pro is the most advanced and powerful iPad we have ever made,” says Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of worldwide marketing.

“It’s A9X chip beats most portable PCs in both CPU and graphics tasks, but is thin and light enough to hold all day.”

The company also debuted an Apple Pencil and new Smart Keyboard, both available for purchase separately.

The Apple Pencil is ‘a precision input device.. which makes drawing and sketching feel remarkably fluid and natural’, Apple says. The touch subsystem of the multi-touch display in iPad Pro has been redesigned to work with the Pencil to reduce latency and provide ‘incredible accuracy’ for activities like fine art illustration and detailed 3D design.

Apps - and Siri - move to TV

For some retailers, however, it was news of the upgraded Apple TV – complete with an App store, Siri integration and a touch-screen remote with built in accelerometer and gyroscope –  which prompted the most excitement.

Built from the ground up with a new generation of high performance hardware, the new Apple TV runs the new tvOS operating system, based on Apple’s iOS, enabling iOS developers to create new apps and games for Apple TV and deliver them via the Apple TV App Store.

Eddy Cue, Apple senior vice president of internet software and services, says apps make the TV experience ‘even more compelling for viewers and we think apps represent the future of TV’.

The TV also features an A8 chip ‘for even better performance so developers can build engaging games and custom content apps for the TV’, Apple says.

tvOS supports key iOS technologies, including Metal, for detailed graphics, complex visual effect and Game Centre, to play and share games with friends.

The changes, says one retailer ‘take Apple TV to another level in terms of a media player’.

Rosy future for iPhones

The new iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus introduce 3D touch, which senses force to enable new ways of accessing features and interacting with content.

Philip Schiller, Apples senior vice president of worldwide marketing, says the phones ‘are the most advance iPhones ever’ with 7000 series aluminium, ion-strengthened glass, the new 64-bit A9 chip, 12-megapixel iSight and 5-megapixel FaceTime HD cameras, faster touch ID, LET and Wi-Fi.

A Live Photos feature will help bring still images to life by capturing a moment in motion.

The devices will also be available in a new colour – rose gold – for those of us who like a little colour in our lives.

Apple Watch

Of course, the Apple Watch wasn’t left out of the party either, with Apple offering up an expanded range of watch styles and colours, watchOS 2 and native apps.

The launch comes just days after Telsyte revealed a new survey which shows the Apple Watch-dominated smartwatch market in Australia is ‘lacklustre’, with 10% of users already abandoning their devices.

The emerging technology analyst firm says only 205,000 smartwatch units were sold in Australia in the first half of 2015, with a lack of killer apps holding demand back.

Telsyte said earlier this week that the introduction of a lower cost Apple Watch would help increase sales in the coming months, however, with last night’s announcements not including any low cost Watch options, we may be waiting a while longer for smartwatches to capture the imagination of Australian consumers.

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